David M. Wirtz has represented employers exclusively for over 30 years, with an emphasis on:

  • Litigation prevention / employment law counseling
  • Discrimination litigation
  • Class action defense – Fair Labor Standards Act, systemic discrimination
  • ERISA litigation defense
  • Arbitrations, mediations, and other ADR
  • Collective bargaining
  • Employment and separation agreements
  • Human resources policies and handbooks

David provides 24/7 service and pragmatic advice helping managers, human resources professionals and in-house employment counsel with decisions concerning hiring, firing, promotions, compensation, and leaves. As a trial lawyer, David has successfully defended scores of individual, class and collective actions and achieved multiple defense verdicts in state and federal courts involving alleged discrimination (age, disability, race, national origin, gender, harassment, retaliation), covenants, wage & hour violations, negligent hiring, negligent supervision, negligent retention, breach of contract, and negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress. He has successfully defended his clients in hundreds of arbitration proceedings.

David works with a wide range of clients in:

  • Retailing
  • Insurance
  • Financial services
  • Hospitality
  • Healthcare and medical supplies
  • Information technology
  • Property management
  • Finance
  • Food
  • Construction
  • Law firms
  • Museums and foundations
  • Schools
  • Municipalities and special districts

David is a skilled writer and speaker, and his articles on topics ranging from the history of restrictive covenants to retaliation claims have appeared in numerous legal publications. He has also appeared regularly as an expert commentator on employment-related issues for local television and radio stations, and he frequently lectures to other employment attorneys and in-house counsel. Additionally, David has taught as an adjunct professor at Cardozo Law School since 1992 and as a guest lecturer at the Columbia Business School.

Professional & Community Affiliations


Labor and Employment Law Section

American Bar Association


Labor and Employment Law Section Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility

New York State Bar Association


Professional Responsibility Committee

New York City Bar Association


Committee on Professional Ethics

New York County Lawyers Association

Vice President, Board of Directors

Lenox Hill Neighborhood House


Awarded, AV® Preeminent Peer Review Rating


Named, Super Lawyer

New York

Super Lawyers


Named, Top Rated Lawyer® - Labor & Employment Law

The American Lawyer & Martindale-Hubbell™


Empire State Counsel Honoree for Pro Bono Activities

News, Analysis & Press

Employers Face Laws Forbidding Salary History Queries

Business Insurance

November 28, 2017

NYC Mayor’s Order Aids Union Organizing of Retail Workers

Bloomberg BNA Daily Labor Report

July 22, 2016

Law Firms Must Address Changing Employment Realities

New York Law Journal

October 19, 2015

Amid turmoil, Wyckoff Heights strikes deal with nurses

Crain’s New York Health Pulse

January 6, 2012

Pandemic Preparation for New York Workplaces

New York Law Journal

April 29, 2009

Speaking Engagements

Moving Through the Fog: Handling Complex Issues in Workplace Accommodations Involving "Invisible" Disabilities, Gender Identity and Religious Preferences

The 2017 Executive Employer® Conference

May 12, 2017

Going Local: The New Frontier of Employer Regulations

National Retail Federation, Longboat Key, FL

April 27, 2017

Labor Law Nuts and Bolts

Practising Law Institute, New York, NY

April 13, 2017

Arbitration Agreements with Class Action Waivers

American Arbitration Association, New York, NY

November 17, 2016
2015 Tri-State Employer Conference

New York, NY

November 5, 2015

Basic Lessons on Ethics and Civility 2015

New York State Bar Association, Long Island, NY

April 24, 2015
Annual NY Legal Update: The Top Employment and Labor Issues Affecting New York Employers

New York, NY

October 16, 2014

Ethical Considerations Applicable to Settlement Negotiations and Mediation

Littler Mendelson, Phoenix, AZ

May 8, 2014
Mandatory Arbitration of Employment Disputes — A Littler Debate

New York, NY

February 25, 2014
Interns: The Next Wave of Class Action Lawsuits

New York, NY

August 6, 2013

Introductory Lessons on Ethics and Civility 2013

New York State Bar Association, Huntington, NY

April 19, 2013

Critical Employment Law Issues Facing Healthcare Employers Today

2012 Healthcare Summit - Littler Mendelson

September 12, 2012

Ethical Minefields and e-Discovery – A Perfect Match

The 2012 Executive Employer® Conference

Littler Mendelson, Scottsdale, AZ

May 10, 2012
A Look Back / A Look Forward Legal Update: The Top Employment and Labor Issues Affecting New York Employers

New York, NY

March 14, 2012
David M. Wirtz to speak at the Fall Meeting of the Labor & Employment Law Section of the New York State Bar Association

September 24, 2011
The 2011 Littler Health Care Summit

New York, NY

June 8, 2011

Introductory Lessons on Ethics and Civility

New York County Lawyers Association

January 13, 2011
Weathering the New Wave of Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions

New York, NY

May 12, 2010
Employment Arbitration Agreements and Their Alternatives - The Ever-Changing Legal Landscape

New York, NY

October 16, 2007


  • J.D., Cornell University Law School, 1974
  • B.A., Johns Hopkins University With Honors

Bar Admission

New York


  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 2nd Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York